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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
so i have a 2007 r6 track bike that i bought back in 2016 that i want to revive. how hard is it to rebuild a full ohlin suspension? are there any good "how to" videos out there. and i know dave moss is an suspension expert and an all around good mechanic. has anyone subscribed to his online mechanic forum? how are his videos, is it worth it? does he have any full ohlin suspension rebuild videos? how much does it cost to rebuild my suspension if i were to send it to suspension shop? any input would be appreciated. thanks
 

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@Seawall - What is your definition of "rebuild'? Annual fluid change?, full service? (disassembly, clean and inspect, new seals and fluid) repair any damage parts?
Depending on what you are needing, it could be as cheap as a liter of fork oil or several hundred dollars including replacement parts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
complete full service; disassemble, inspect for wear and damage, replace any plastic or rubber seals and of course replace the fluids. i bought it as a used, as is track bike and i would like to know everything about the bike. i have only ridden this thing for a few times. i did not build it from the ground up. it is a fully loaded track bike. i want to and try to get to know the bike more and more. i really want to do all the fixes myself but i'm just a DIY type of guy not an expert mechanic. so any input would be considered and appreciated.
 

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@Seawall - You will need to invest in some specialty tools. Fork spring compressor, jamb nut holding tool, cartridge holding removal tool, damper rod holder, fluid level tool and seal driver.

 

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My buddy that did my ktech suspension on the fz is an ohlins certified tech. I think he charges around $350 for fork rebuild with new seals, dust covers, and fluids. I'm not sure what he charges for the rear but I do know he has a special vacuum machine that's needed to remove all air from the rear shock when being rebuilt.
 

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I've never done a shock before - I'm pretty sure you need some special equipment - the shocks are usually charged with high pressure nitrogen and I'm not sure that equipment is something you can get affordably.

Forks will depend on what you want to do. Are you doing a 'basic rebuild' which would be new bushings, seals & fluid, or are you wanting to tear down the cartridge itself and check the valving and such? For a basic rebuild its pretty simple - I purchased an oil level tool, and a spring compressor on amazon for around $25 each. I got a universal cartridge bleed tool & cartridge nut wrench with my GP cartridges. I built a cartridge holder out of some PVC from the local hardware store for about 5 bucks. The only other tool you'll probably want is a fork seal driver if you plan to replace the fork seals & bushings.

If you want to get into the cartridges themselves then I've got no idea what is involved - everything above plus some....

Honestly if you aren't planing on doing any re-valving type work and the seals aren't leaking then I wouldn't even bother with tearing the forks apart until you have some reason to do so. Do what Dave Moss calls a 'dump and run' and just replace the fluid in the forks with clean fresh fluid and see how it behaves. You could even do this 2 or 3 times to make sure you get most of the old fluid that is trapped inside the cartridge out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've never done a shock before - I'm pretty sure you need some special equipment - the shocks are usually charged with high pressure nitrogen and I'm not sure that equipment is something you can get affordably.

Forks will depend on what you want to do. Are you doing a 'basic rebuild' which would be new bushings, seals & fluid, or are you wanting to tear down the cartridge itself and check the valving and such? For a basic rebuild its pretty simple - I purchased an oil level tool, and a spring compressor on amazon for around $25 each. I got a universal cartridge bleed tool & cartridge nut wrench with my GP cartridges. I built a cartridge holder out of some PVC from the local hardware store for about 5 bucks. The only other tool you'll probably want is a fork seal driver if you plan to replace the fork seals & bushings.

If you want to get into the cartridges themselves then I've got no idea what is involved - everything above plus some....

Honestly if you aren't planing on doing any re-valving type work and the seals aren't leaking then I wouldn't even bother with tearing the forks apart until you have some reason to do so. Do what Dave Moss calls a 'dump and run' and just replace the fluid in the forks with clean fresh fluid and see how it behaves. You could even do this 2 or 3 times to make sure you get most of the old fluid that is trapped inside the cartridge out.
nice!!! your making me more and more confident and convinced that i should do my front suspension rebuild. thank you for that. cheers
 
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Go for it. It's not hard. Race Tech is amazing with their service and knowledge. They will answer any questions over the phone - but just be respectful and learn the terminology of course before you try and converse with any professional about the subject. Race-Tech and Motion pro have any and every tool you might need. There are TONS of videos online offering advice and step-by-step action. EVERYONE should open up their forks and inspect / change the oil in their bike at least once!! Especially if you just get a used bike. I've seen forks from across my bench that were bent - many times from new owners of used bikes. You would be shocked the nasty oil (and sometimes syrup / gel) that I've drained from forks. The owners had NO idea they were so bad. Please everyone service your forks if you are keeping your bike! haha

I kid you not - I wiped out on an Aprilia that I put used Ohlins forks on. I didn't have time to take them apart and inspect them before I went ripping with friends. I crashed out.. lost the front on a turn I know like the back of my hand. TOTALLED the bike. Took the forks apart and found the shim stack was installed upside down by some absolute idiot. OMG I wanted to kill someone. No wonder the clickers/adjusters didn't seem to do anything the day before when I was out trying to adjust them! I tried to tell my friends that I wasn't ready to go riding that morning but they were begging me to go. They love taking turns following me because they love the sound of that bike and I would ride it really hard - which is rare for an Aprilia owner.

Anyhow strip them down. Hopefully you won't find any surprises! Keep us updated.
 

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nice!!! your making me more and more confident and convinced that i should do my front suspension rebuild. thank you for that. cheers
If you're reasonably competent and slightly mechanically inclined there is nothing 'hard' about it - watch any video on youtube about rebuilding USD forks and you'll have all the same steps. Given that you're doing an R6 there are probably 100 videos on it specifically. I was worried about it too - and I've done 'RSU' forks before, USD forks aren't really any harder, you just have to have the extra tools to hold the cartridge so you can get it in and out.

Start by backing off the preload and clickers all the way
1. Remove the fork from the bike
2. Break the bottom cartridge bolt loose (this is easier with spring tension holding it and using an impact wrench)
3. Remove the cap (this is where you need the special spring holding tool & the thin wrench to hold the lock nut
4. Remove the spring & spring spacer if there is one - note the orientation, I used a paint pen to mark the 'up' side of both.
5 Dump out as much of the oil as you can from the top of the tube (pumping the cartridge up and down can get some more out too)
6. Remove the bottom cartridge bolt all the way - you may be able to do this using your impact wrench or you may need the cartridge holder tool.
7. Remove the cartridge by lifting out it out
If you are doing a full rebuild continue by
8. Removing the dust seal - you can usually just slide it out with gentle pressure/prying with a small screw driver
9. Remove the circle clip that holds the oil seal in
10. Using the fork itself as a slide hammer drive the busing and oil seal out - your upper and lower tube should come apart now
IMHO this is the part where new people think they've done something wrong - you really gotta put some effort into it. Push the two tube together all the way and then slide em appart forcefully. Do it several times and you should be rewarded with the oil seal and bushing poping out.
11. Clean everything - I used brake parts cleaner because it doesnt' leave any residue
12. Assembly is the reverse of removal, except you need the fork seal driver in order to install the new 'upper' tube bushing and oil seal (the parts you hammered out) at step 10. You can do it using a screw driver or punch and a hammer but you have to be very careful not to mess up the seal because it will leak and you'll have to do it all over again. If you know someone with a 3d printer you can have them print you a seal driver, there are several models out there. I had a friend print mine and it worked well, but is a single use item especially if they print it in PLA (not as strong).

One thing I saw on a youtube video was a guy using the front axle held in a vice and the axle pinch bolt on the fork leg to hold the fork leg while he worked on it - seemed like a cool idea if you have a vice you can put down low. I just held mine between my legs and sat/kneeled on a rubber mat in my driveway.
 
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